Jacksonville Jaguars first round selection Luke Joeckel will be playing right tackle for the team (at least in his first year) and he will likely be a major upgrade over the revolving door that was the position with Guy Whimper and Cameron Bradfield in 2012. Joeckel was widely regarded as the best offensive tackle, and perhaps prospect, in the 2013 NFL Draft and will make a major impact.
How big of an impact, do you ask?
While we won’t know until the season starts, we can extrapolate based on fellow former first round offensive tackle, Eugene Monroe’s rookie season stats and compare them to the numbers from Britton, Whimper, and Bradfield. We’ll be using Pro Football Focus’ grades for pass protection and run blocking to compare. While Monroe plays left tackle, the argument has been made (often times by PFF) that the two positions are relatively equal in pressure surrendered and the results of those pressures.
Eugene Monroe (2009):
- Pass blocking (Season): -7.1
- Run blocking (Season): +9.8
- Pass blocking (high): +2.1 (weeks 10 and 17)
- Run blocking (high): +2.6 (week 15)
Cameron Bradfield (2012):
- Pass blocking (Season): -2.2
- Run blocking (Season): -4.6
- Pass blocking (high): +3.9 (weeks eight)
- Run blocking (high): +.6 (weeks five, eight, and 14)
Guy Whimper (2012):
- Pass blocking (Season): -10.2
- Run blocking (Season): -4.4
- Pass blocking (high): +.2 (weeks 11 and 12)
- Run blocking (high): +2.6 (weeks three)
While Monroe was a definite liability in pass protection during his first season in the league, he was an absolute upgrade over Britton and Bradfield in run blocking. As a much better pass protector in 2013 he should provide a strong presence opposite Joeckel, even if he struggles in pass protection like Monroe did during his rookie season.
The numbers speak to Whimper and Bradfield being mediocre at best and terrible at their worst. Joeckel promises to make this line better. Even if he does surrender a lot of pressure in his rookie season, his upside is considerably higher than Whimper and Bradfield. The importance of having Joeckel on the offensive line, even if he was a “reach” at the right tackle position, can not be overstated enough. The Jaguars cannot survive more poor play from guys like Bradfield.
We’ll see how Joeckel looks during the rookie minicamp beginning on Friday.
– Luke N. Sims
You can also find me on Twitter @LukeNSims